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04th Jul 2024

Ronaldo could face one match ban for ‘illegal stunt’ at Euro 2024

Zoe Hodges

‘Cristiano and WHOOP is ambush marketing to Euro 2024’

Cristiano Ronaldo could face a one match ban or a fine over an ‘illegal’ marketing stunt at Euro 2024.

Ronaldo is an investor and ambassador for fitness technology company WHOOP.

During Portugal’s game against Slovenia, the 39-year-old was wearing one of the company’s devices under a bandage on his wrist which was collecting data throughout the game.

The company subsequently published his heart rate data across social media which showed it had dropped from over 170 beats per minute at the end of the 90 minutes to below 110bpm before Jan Oblak saved his penalty in extra time.

However, WHOOP are not an official UEFA sponsor of Euro 2024 and both the company and Ronaldo have been accused of ‘ambush marketing’.

In 2012, a similar incident occurred where Denmark striker, Nicklas Bendtner showed off a pair of Paddy Power underpants during his goal celebration against Portugal.

Bendtner received a one match ban and an £80,000 fine for displaying the sponsored underwear.

At the time the striker said: “It is just a pair of lucky boxer shorts that I used in the first game as well and have used before the tournament. I didn’t know I was breaking any rules but I am aware of that now.”

Ricardo Fort, the former head of global sponsorships at Visa and Coca-Cola, have urged UEFA to act against both Ronaldo and WHOOP over this latest incident.

Taking to X, Fort wrote: “Cristiano and WHOOP is ambush marketing to Euro 2024. It is illegal and both the player and the company should be fined.”

He added: “The post is about a UEFA match, uses the names of the two national teams playing, score, and a player on the field.

“They are implying an association with the event and that is illegal. Not having ‘a competitor as a sponsor’ isn’t a reason to tolerate infringements.”

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